Wireless Internet Access Global Map
The purpose of network access control is to protect and safeguard assets attached to network from threats of unauthorized users gaining access to organization’s assets.

Network Access Control (NAC) authenticate users to make sure they are authorized to login and following the policies and procedures for login before authorized to use organization assets. Some of the threats to assets are insider fraud, identity theft and botnet infestation, where botnet can be utilized as a launching pad for attacks to other organizations.

Various laws and regulations have been introduced for various industries to protect organization data. Organization can be held liable, if they don’t practice due diligence or have adequate protection for their assets. Before putting the policy in place to protect these assets it might help to know specific threats to environment. Today’s threats come from well organized criminals who take advantage of unprotected assets. These days most of the cyber crimes are international crimes. Even though most of the countries have cyber crimes laws today but the legal system varies from country to country which slows cooperation between countries. Today’s technology is changing fast but the legal system is not changing fast enough to tackle new cyber crimes. We don’t have comprehensive international laws yet which cover cyber crimes to prosecute these criminals; most of cyber crimes are conducted from a country whose law enforcement agency either don’t have time and training to pursue these crimes vigorously or don’t have a jurisdiction in the country where the crime is committed. Sometime law enforcement agencies get help from Interpol to prosecute these individuals, but most of the time law enforcement agencies in various countries are helpless because these criminals are not in their jurisdiction. In some cases these criminals are utilizing state of the art tools to cover their tracks.

Some Considerations to tackle NAC: adapt ISO 27002 domain 11 sub category 11.4 (NAC) controls as a policy suitable to your organization.

1. Create a network access control policy: policy on use of network services
2. User authentication for internal and external connections
3. Enforce access control policy
3a. Up-to-date signature file (anti-virus, anti-worm, anti-trojan, anti-adware)
3b. Up-to date patches
3c. Equipment identification in network
3d. Backup access control logs remotely and review regularly
3e. Multihome firewall installed which segregate networks
3f. Harden system configuration
3g. Network connection control
3h. Network routing control
4. Assess the posture of your network regularly to redefine policies
5. Gartner MarketScope for Network Access Control, 2008
6. The Forrester Wave™: Network Access Control, Q3 2008

“In Forrester’s 73-criteria evaluation of network access control (NAC) vendors, we found that Microsoft, Cisco Systems, Bradford Networks, and Juniper Networks lead the pack because of their strong enforcement and policy. Microsoft’s NAP technology is a relative newcomer, but has become the de facto standard and pushes NAC into its near-ubiquitous Windows Server customer base.”

Nortel Secure Network Access and Microsoft NAP integration

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